Jeff Koons (1955-)
“Bourgeois Bust - Jeff and Ilona” (1991)
Created for the “Made in Heaven” exhibition, in which Koons explored the concept of love in relation to his own marriage to porn star Ilona Staller. The couple are depicted within a traditional Baroque style that drew its inspiration from antique classical sculpture. With her plaited hair and string of pearls, Staller appears like Venus, the Greek goddess of love.
Last Thursday I went to see her live, perform an almost two and a half hour set whilst watching the entire performance in an exclusive VIP section of the stage, just under her piano. For the last three years I have been making artwork of her; pieces have been selected and used on her website, in her tour bus, posted on FB and Twitter and one was even worn on a jacket she performed in in New York. My main intention has always been to show her my artwork, and I decided to take a leap by purchasing this package as I thought the artwork I have sold of her has effectively paid for the ticket itself.
After the show, we were escorted to a room where we waited for Gaga to have another dress change for us. We were talking to her as a group for a good 45 minutes, each having our own individual conversations with her. I got onto the topic of Art, and her collaboration with Jeff Koons for the album artwork for ARTPOP, which is a giant white sculpture of herself behind one of his gazing balls. Meeting her was surreal, she was so down to earth and philosophical. When we lined up to have out photos taken with Gaga, I walked into the room and the first thing she said was “Oh, I love your Gaga Lichtenstein t-shirt!” I explained that it was my artwork and I had created a book with all my artwork in, after that I couldn’t really make sense of any of my words as I had planned to say so much and I was so nervous. We hugged and took this picture. I can finally say she has all of my artwork!